UK Tech Industry Is Booming: Report

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A 45nm process 300mm silicon wafer is displayed at a press conference in Tokyo.

The U.K.'s burgeoning tech industry is helping to lift the salaries of British digital workers well above the national average.

According to the Tech Nation 2016 report, the average annual salary for digital roles grew by 13 percent between 2012 and 2015 to now stand at around £50,000 ($70,000) -- 36 percent higher than the national average salary.

Unsurprisingly, bigger pay checks have led to a boom in employee numbers, with the U.K.'s tech economy accounting for nearly 1.6 million jobs -- growing nearly 3 times faster than the rest of the U.K.'s economy - and generating a combined annual turnover of £161 billion ($233 billion), claims the report.

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"Britain's world leading tech sector gives us a competitive edge that is not just transforming our daily lives but also our economy -- we are a becoming a true Tech Nation," said Prime Minister David Cameron in the publication's foreword.

"Digital technologies are unlike any others -- they change everything businesses do," echoed Nesta chief executive Geoff Mulgan. "That's why, as this research confirms, digital jobs and activity are becoming ever more important in traditionally non-digital areas of the economy -- from retail to financial services and the public sector."

Basing its analysis on government figures, job advertisements and official Office for National Statistics (ONS) data, the second annual Tech Nation report was produced by the government-backed Tech City UK initiative and provides detailed insight into what makes the U.K.'s tech economy and where it is performing strongest. It identifies 58,000 active digital businesses operating in the United Kingdom with app and software development the top sector, accounting for 17 percent of digital businesses, followed by data management and analytics.

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London is the city with the highest number of people working in tech roles (over 300,000) and also the biggest single source of digital revenue, generating over £60 billion ($85 billion) in turnover in 2014. Nevertheless, three-quarters of digital tech businesses are based outside of London, with many located in specific tech clusters, including Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester, Glasgow and Cambridge, where Apple and Spotify have a presence.


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